Adding value to an apartment building here in Los Angeles is important! With renters getting more picky and owners/investors wanting to maximize their returns it's important to know which factors actually add value to an apartment building.
Maximizing Rents - For the most part, this seems to be pretty obvious for those familiar with apartment buildings. The income of a specific property has a big part in determining what that building is worth. Not only what the current rents are but also what the maximum potential income of the building is. Most apartment buildings have tenants in them that pay way below "market rent". What would the income of the building look like if all the units were paying "market rent"? So, it's important to increase rents when you are allowed to as well as making sure you are maximizing market rents when a vacancy comes available!
Tenant Ammenities - The tenants are the people paying rent! The better experience and evironment you can provide the better chance you have at them paying a higher rent. For example, laundry rooms or in-unit washer/dryers are a big plus for tenants. Tenants will pay more money to have these conveniences which ultimately leads to the building producing a higher income. Especially in Los Angeles, tenants want to live in an apartment building that has as many ammenities as possible which ultimately helps them justify paying a higher rent. BBQ's, pools, gyms, bike racks, secured parking, and a good environment is what help people justify the high monthly rents. We understand not all apartment buildings are fit for some of these ammenities but you want to do your best to even things out if you can't provide ammenities outside the apartment unit. If you are limited on space, we suggest spending a bit more money on the interior of the units to really bring that "wow" factor to the prospective tenants. Tenants will still pay top dollar for a unit that is phenomenal on the inside but maybe doesn't have a pool and gym on site.
Moral of the story, focus on the income of the building. Now of course any major issues with the building itself can hurt your buildings value. Bad foundation, needs all new plumbing, or a completely new roof to name a few. Make sure you are aware of your buildings condition and handling any problems before they turn into major problems! Major problems will hurt your value!